I am really enjoying your conversation. I would like to add a few words as I feel the Holy Spirit has been speaking to me on this subject directly for some time now.
Who gets it? Our church is a Mennonite Brethren church. It is usually low key, nobody speaks in tongues at church, dancing and raucous worship is reserved for the younger crowd. Anyway, we had a guest preacher come in from England, and said that he would be speaking about healing that evening, and as the Holy Spirit has had this subject on my heart for some time, I went. There was a cloud of skepticism in the room, but also the Spirit was there. The preacher, near the end of the talk said that there was somebody there with a sore shoulder (sport injury) to which three believers raised their hands. One of them was invited up to be healed before everyone.
WOW, this is what I came to see. I believed that if I could only see how it is done, I will be able to do it too. I have many times been urged by the Spirit to lay hands on people, but remain disobedient. What will they think? What if I blow it?
So the guy goes up and is prayed for. OK move your arm around, does it feel better? No. Pray more
. Better yet? Not really. Nothing happened to the guy. No healing.
Elsewhere in the church:
When the preacher asked if anyone had a sore shoulder, another man, non-believer, ducked his head down to hide because he didnt want to go up to the front. All the time the preacher is speaking to the guy at the front, this guys shoulder is starting to burn, while he tries to hide in the pews.
The end result is his shoulder is healed completely, he sleeps through the night, and last week I heard that he was recently asked at a home group if he believed in Jesus, to which he replied, I do now. Even with a room full of doubt, God was faithful to that preacher for speaking His word. Bodily healing can lead to spiritual healing. God rewarded the preachers faith, and not that of the man who was healed. But the sins of the healed man were forgiven.
Why did Jesus speak to thousands at a time? I think it had much to do with his healing. It got people to come out to witness the power of God.
God healed an unbelievers shoulder as a sign to him, but also a sign to us. Three believers with sore shoulders got nothing. I believe that that was because, being believers, they lacked the faith in miracles.
Jesus did less miracles around his home town, not because it was not Gods will that they be healed, but that they lacked faith in the carpenters son.
John 14:11 to 14 Believe me when I say that I am in the father and the father is in me; or at least believe on the evidence of the miracles themselves. I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father. And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name and I will do it.
If you cant walk on water, it is not because it is not Gods will. It is because you have not yet reached sufficient faith to make it happen.
It is Gods will that we do miracles, not that we make excuses for why we dont. It is Gods will that we love God and one another. Healing someone is not against Gods will. If you have the gift of faith, or healing or tongues, or whatever. It is yours to use because it is right to use it to glorify God. You dont wait for God to direct you to pray, that is just a given.